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Does anyone listen to The Guilty Feminist podcast? Trans stuff.

(144 Posts)
CloudPerson Thu 23-Nov-17 09:49:26

I listened to their latest podcast yesterday, the general theme was The Handmaid's Tale.
They brought up some interesting stuff about trans issues and I wanted to discuss them.
On the whole I enjoy the podcast, it's entertaining, their use of cis irritates me, but I do enjoy it.

Their view of transwomen/men was one I generally agree with. Some interesting points about encouraging fluid genders and non binary as this will confuse the patriarchy, which I agree with. People should be who they are, live and dress how they want to be, take away gender, because is damaging bullshit.

However, when I read about things happening now, erasure of women, lesbians etc, the small/vocal/aggressive/homophobic minority, isn't this actively encouraging misogyny and the patriarchy? Keeping people in their neat gender boxes? Encouraging strict gender roles, sexism? It isn't encouraging a more open, welcoming society at all.

If current trans issues were as harmless as TGF podcast says it is, there wouldn't be the opposition. Sure you'd still get your bigots who don't like trans people because they're not fitting in the box, but I certainly wouldn't have any issue at all if it was simply a case of people campaigning to live happily and having a right not to be targeted. But the way it's going I do have a problem, because TRAs campaigns could actively harm women and womens' rights.

Someone on the podcast also mentioned the lack of trans people in The Handmaid's Tale, or they were referenced to as gender traitors and not a big part of the story? (I haven't watched the tv adaptation but read the book a while ago and can't really remember this bit). My take on that is that if current loud TRAs get their way then trans people will be erased anyway, because transwomen are women, I on the face of it, it looks like a purely binary society is their aim? So a potential future could look like some women having fertility issues and not being able to carry babies, but because they are born men, except that won't be spoken of because it's deadnaming/violence/bigotry?

Anyway, not had much sleep, rambling a bit. Just wondered if anyone else had listened to this and what they thought.

Ereshkigal Thu 23-Nov-17 09:59:17

Why would MTF trans people be expected to have a central role in a story about a patriarchal society controlling women's fertility for a perceived common good? And we all know they were talking about male people, not female.

Sentimentallentil Thu 23-Nov-17 10:07:18

I have no issue whatsoever with ‘non binary’ people or whatever they call themselves (I prefer to call it having a personality but whatever) I agree that we should be pushing gender boundaries etc but this should be with the aim to get rid of it alltogether. I have no issue at all with a man wearing a dress or taking on more feminine roles, or even changing their name asking to be referred to as she or whatever they choose to do, as long as they acknowledge that they haven’t become a woman.
You don’t become a woman by the clothes you wear or by your behaviour or thoughts because there is no such thing as female clothes or thoughts.

CloudPerson Thu 23-Nov-17 10:52:12

It was a FTM transman talking about the lack of trans people.

Margaret Attwood was held up as somehow predicting how the future is becoming, and how uncanny it is that we do seem to be moving towards/could easily become the kind of world that she described.

My feelings are that the current trend to push for transwomen = women is exactly what will contribute to that sort of society, when what would be healthier all round for everyone is to abolish gender. We have men and women, but purely on a biological level, for purposes of medicine, safety etc, but that's as far as it should go. This is how the women on TGF podcast see current trans issues, but I can't see that, I can only see the vocal campaigners as pushing towards a strict binary society, where born women will miss out yet again.

CloudPerson Thu 23-Nov-17 10:54:15

The link to the podcast is here if anyone wants to listen.

Sentimentallentil Thu 23-Nov-17 10:57:40

I don’t understand how the people on the podcast could possibly see people changing their sex to fit their idea of their ‘gender identity’ is dismantling gender confused that’s some serious doublethink going on there.

CloudPerson Thu 23-Nov-17 11:08:42

They didn't specifically say changing sex, I think it came across more as identifying, wearing what you want etc, which would dismantle gender if it was done properly, and not in the way we are seeing now, where children are assumed to be the wrong gender (sex?) because they don't play with toys that fit their stereotyped gender.

If we could move towards being a society that accepts that boys and girls can play with anything they want to, and wear whatever they want and be happy, that would be great.
Current trans trends aren't doing that though, they're pushing small children to transition, but I think most people don't really know that, or if they do they think it's being liberal, which, when you think deeply about it, it really isn't.

CloudPerson Thu 23-Nov-17 11:10:52

There didn't seem to be doublethink about it, it came across as genuinely thinking that we're on the right track to shake up the patriarchy. I think people won't let themselves think too deeply about it, because then they'll be labelled TERFs, and that would be terrible hmm

SylviaPoe Thu 23-Nov-17 11:21:50

Wearing what you want and identifying how you want won’t stop women being treated badly.

Sentimentallentil Thu 23-Nov-17 11:22:05

I’m sorry cloud but I don’t think I can follow the point your trying to make.

Sentimentallentil Thu 23-Nov-17 11:23:45

We are not on track to dismantling gender, we in fact have gone into reverse. If the people on the podcast can’t see that then they are blind.

SylviaPoe Thu 23-Nov-17 11:31:06

The impression I get from people making gender fluidity arguments is that they think gender is about clothes, toys etc. These are tiny parts of gender. Gender is mostly about issues like male violence, poor treatment of women’s bodies in healthcare and pregnancy, assaults on women’s autonomy, trafficking and slavery of women.

The gender fluidity focuses on the more minor issues as if that will somehow miraculously solve the big ones.

BigDeskBob Thu 23-Nov-17 11:56:02

"Some interesting points about encouraging fluid genders and non binary as this will confuse the patriarchy"

So where are all the female transpeople? If the patriarchy is so confused by non binary, how come the media is full of male trans people and very few female trans?

The patriarchy isn't confused by gender fluidity, gender is the patriarchy.

Sentimentallentil Thu 23-Nov-17 11:56:59

See I disagree slightly there Sylvia the issues you’ve mentioned as being the bigger issues all relate to sex rather than gender.
These issues refer to things that happen to women’s sexed bodies rather than their gender identity.
I’m all for people wearing what they like and behaving outside of perceived social gender norms, I do think that’s a good thing, but it’s problematic when people then attach this behaviour to gender. They are not ‘gender fluid’ gender doesn’t exist, they are simply a person wearing clothes.
When we talk about gender as a spectrum or as being able to be fluid in it we are still giving credence to the idea of it being a tangible thing.
I love it when people behave outside of their expected gender norms and I think it definitely has a role in smashing the patriarchy, but only if people step outside them alltogether or reject the idea of gendered behaviours or things, rather than swap genders or go from one to the other.

CloudPerson Thu 23-Nov-17 11:57:53

Sorry, I haven't had much sleep and I'm not organising my thoughts very well.

The impression I get from the podcast, and from talking to other people, is that they think the current trans agenda is good, and is dismantling gender, because she can be he and he can be she. And this can only be good because it's progress. Except it's not. And you're right, they are blind, they're not seeing it clearly.

What I was trying to say was that if the way they were presenting it in the podcast (dismantling gender, two fingers up at the patriarchy, wearing sequins in the street and dancing - all lovely fluffy stuff), then that would be fantastic.
But if you think a little, that's not what it's about. I agree with you I think, I just have a whole muddle of thoughts and it's coming out wrong.
Why can't people see it though?
When most people I talk to think it's all ok and I'm overthinking it all, it makes me doubt my thoughts on the matter.

Sentimentallentil Thu 23-Nov-17 11:58:19

The patriarchy isn't confused by gender fluidity, gender is the patriarchy.


SylviaPoe Thu 23-Nov-17 12:00:54

I don’t believe in gender identity, Lentil.

Gender refers to the different ways men and women are treated, including through their sexed bodies.

Sentimentallentil Thu 23-Nov-17 12:01:07

I think people don’t want to see it because their identity is so intertwined with being progressive and liberal that they would have to give a bit of themselves up to see it.
No one wants to be the big bad wolf.

CloudPerson Thu 23-Nov-17 12:03:04

BigDesk, because transmen are women and therefore not a threat maybe? All the agenda at the moment seems to be driven by loud, aggressive men, which is threatening.
I've never heard of a transman declaring that they are a man, or at least not in the same way that transwomen are doing. I haven't heard of transmen being violent in reaction to people talking about sex and biology.

CloudPerson Thu 23-Nov-17 12:04:21

The patriarchy isn't confused by gender fluidity, gender is the patriarchy.

Yes. This is the kind of thing I mean (bloody brain!)

Sentimentallentil Thu 23-Nov-17 12:04:21

Ah I see what you’re saying sylvia

Yes it’s complicated because you can reject your gender and perform in a different way but society and patriarchy will construct a gender around you anyway.

Sentimentallentil Thu 23-Nov-17 12:05:42

A load of my drag queen friends are all growing moustaches for Movember and they have loooooooads of transmen friends and I haven’t seen a single person comment on their photos that women can have testicles too.

SylviaPoe Thu 23-Nov-17 12:06:33

Yes, because gender is about how men and women are treated as classes. You can’t reject it as an individual.

lionguard Thu 23-Nov-17 12:09:53

I heard it too, and I started a thread just now asking about Reubs Walsh as she’s often on the podcast and I think she has some really interesting stuff to say.

There were some glaring issues with some of it, and I did do a hmm face when they said it was a shame there were no trans people in the story.

I do support what they do for diversity and inclusion though. I think their view of sex and gender is interesting - that sex is not a question of two categories, but a sliding scale with male and female on either end and people dotted around in between. Illustrates it nicely.

MaryMaryQuiteLovely Thu 23-Nov-17 12:10:14

Was listening to it this morning. Lead woman (Can't remember her name and can't be arsed looking it up) going on about transpeople were leading more 'authentic lives' because they have nowhere to hide or some drivel like that. Gave me the rage so stopped listening and have unsubscribed from the podcast.

Seems like there is nothing that this trans shit hasn't infiltrated these days.

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